What can I say about this delightful book? Betsy-Tacy by the wonderful Maud Hart Lovelace will always hold a special place in my heart and memory. It was our girls’ very first audiobook, borrowed from the library for an especially long trip during the holidays one winter. I was really quite surprised by how much my daughters enjoyed it, considering they weren’t even four and a half at the time. But they were so enthralled by the charming friendship of Betsy and Tacy – two little girls just about their own age – that any time we needed to stop the story for any reason, they were full of questions and speculations about what would happen next. Well, we returned the audiobook to the library, but before a month had passed, they were eager to hear all about Betsy and Tacy’s adventures again, so we had to check the actual book out from the library. And before too long, I finally bought the book just so we’d always have it on hand when they ask to read it again. It’s really just that good.
This book is truly delightful. The setting of yesteryear is one that I doubt my children will ever get to experience firsthand, but that only adds to the story’s charm. The little children of this book, though – they are the same as the ones cuddled up on your lap as you read, full of wide-eyed innocence, brimming with excitement at every new adventure, eager to free their imaginations and enjoy any number of fantastic experiences they can dream up. I enjoyed the book as much for its sweetness as my children did for its wholesome, old-fashioned fun.
The simple, precious illustrations by talented Lois Lenski are styled in such a way as to make them unique from many of the drawings found in more modern children’s books, and they are frequently found throughout the book, offering clear images to enthrall young readers and engage them even more fully in the story.
Betsy and Tacy’s friendship is beautifully told through the hardships and celebrations recorded in this book. There is great value in reading about the wholesome ways these two little girls enjoy every day. I smile every time I see this on our shelf. I can’t wait to read it with my kids yet again!